Saturday, February 28, 2009

Homework and Screen Time

It's Saturday morning in the Roxiticus Valley and we're getting ready for a crazy busy weekend -- starting with Mendham Patriots basketball, leading into two kids' birthday parties, and a Girl Scout roller skating, roller blading bash in Florham Park this evening. As London and Maddie were getting ready for their busy day, I shared with Rex the long list of homework assignments required for Maddie's first grade class... dioramas, puppets, posters, reading responses and a new "at home journal." Rex thought it would be easy to find time for more academic pursuits if we cut back on Maddie's screen time.

While London can settle in and read a Nancy Drew book in an afternoon, Maddie still prefers to log on to an online video game site like MagNext Virtual, which is free to play indefinitely, and Maddie could go on playing indefinitely... bumping and battling, riding and racing, making new virtual friends for chatting and showing off. Since we signed up for our free MagNext Virtual account a few weeks ago, London and Maddie have tried racing their hot rods at roaring speeds, and I've even tried the star-scraping rollercoaster shown in the picture here. The girls enjoy collecting virtual money called Magz and saving up to purchase special paint jobs, action skills and super cool gear in the online shop. On more than one occasion, I've used counting and spending Magz to fulfill London's daily math activity requirement for her second grade class.

If you have kids or enjoy online games yourself, visit MagNext and sign up for a free account, then look for London and Maddie (we go by "RoxiticusDH") and challenge the girls to your favorite game.